Tuesday, September 2, 2003

Georgia's First Lady for Children

In Mary Perdue, Georgians have more than just a First Lady. They also have a dedicated child advocate, concerned particularly with the areas of literacy, foster care, and at-risk children. While Mrs. Perdue holds a Master's Degree in speech therapy, she has nurtured children's spirits by serving, along with her husband, as a foster parent to a number of infants through Covenant Care Services in Macon.

Mrs. Perdue has made it clear from the beginning that she looked at her position as First Lady as an opportunity to promote the cause of child welfare in the state of Georgia. According to Mrs. Perdue, "Children are some of our most valuable citizens. I believe that if we meet the needs of children in their formative years, then we can eliminate many of the problems that older children and teens face," she said.

One of the ways Mrs. Perdue believes we can help Georgia's children is to teach them the power of words early on in life. For Mrs. Perdue, a great lover of books, the opportunity to read to children is always welcome. She prefers books that teach a moral lesson, and her favorite one to read to school children is Miss Twiggley's Tree by Dorothea Warren Fox, which, according to Mrs. Perdue, "teaches young readers that people's differences are really assets."

In September, Mrs. Perdue will be focusing on the issue of Children's Literacy. She is joining with Georgia Public Broadcasting and Georgia schools to promote the importance of reading in the lives of young children. Look for two public service announcements Mrs. Perdue has created about the importance of reading to young children with Mrs. Perdue and her twin granddaughters, Sunni and Mary Kate, which will begin airing on GPTV and PeachStar in September.